PhotoEnforced.com today added a new category of photo enforcement "Right Turn Cameras" to compliment our growing list of "red light cameras" and "speed cameras." As of today we have added 44 locations where illegal right turns are photo enforced from around the U.S. and will be adding many more as the data starts to trickle in from users.
We are starting to see a growing number of right turn cameras popping-up around the U.S. that use traditional red light camera technology to enforce illegal right turns. These new cameras are typically enforcing illegal right turns red or rolling right turns. Illegal rolling right turns are when a driver does not come to a complete stop before making the turn. Illegal right turns are when the driver makes a right turn on red regardless if they camer to a complete stop. The fines in California are $159 and right turn cameras are also being used in Missouri $100), Tenessee ($100), Texas ($75) and Maryland ($75).
These right turn photo enforced intersections often surprise drivers because there are not very many intersections currently regulated. These intersections usually prevent drivers from turning right who might have limited visibility 0t mighy be moving at a speed that is unsafe. I still haven't figured out why rolling right turns are such a big deal that they have to be photo enforced. Its possible that bikers or pedestrians often are frequenting the sidewalks or streets and the cities want drivers to be extra cautious.
The Wall Street Journal botched this story "Get the Feeling You're Being Watched - If You're Driving, You Just Might Be. Cameras to Catch Speeders and Scofflaws Are Spreading -- And Sparking Road Rage" This story was botched as they did not do their homework with regards to cameras in operation. "Suppliers estimate that there are now slightly over 3,000 red-light and speed cameras in operation in the U.S., up from about 2,500 a year ago". This number is incorrect and its more like 5,000-6,000 red light cameras in operation. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says that at the end of last year, 345 U.S. jurisdictions were using red-light cameras, up from 243 in 2007 and 155 in 2006. The Insurance Institute of Highway safety has never published an article on the topic of red light cameras or speed cameras and they are sited as the source for this information as well. I am not sure how much credibility this organization has with regards to regulation, tracking of locations and souring of for this information.
Also, I think RedFlex gave the WSJ a bogus number of 3000 cameras operating in the U.S. so it made it look like they have bigger market share than they actually do. Did they talk to ATS, Nestor, ACS, RedSpeed, LaserCraft, Traffipax, Gatso and Transcore? Did they talk to any cities who have purchased cameras and operate them without the management services of these companies? Many cities have purchased cameras and do not use a large company to operate them. See our comparison grid wiki of red light camera operators
I am also disappointed the writer did not highlight the discrepancies in fines across the U.S. that range from $50-$500.
I am also not sure if the WSJ actually talked to customers who used the Plate Blocker?
In Chicago, running a red light might get you a letter, complete with a $100 fine, thanks to a red-light camera. But that might not be the end of your photo-enforcement mess, because city officials began talking about using the city's ever-growing network of red-light cameras to check for vehicle liability insurance or uninsured motorists. The city could potentially net nearly $10 million a year in fines just by citing uninsured vehicles that also get photo ticketed for a red-light violation. Ed Burke brought the idea to the City Council Traffic Committee. Citing more vehicles—including those driven safely but uninsured—could net the city more than $100 million a year, added Rowland Day, executive vice president of InsureNet, a Michigan-based company that provides instant insurance verification. Day pitched the idea as a way to raise money in tough economic times and make sure more vehicles are insured. Insurenet is still a relatively new company and has yet to prove the concept on any level. Although no state or municipality uses photo-enforcement to ticket the uninsured drivers, Insurenet claims to have three or four states signed in the Spring of 2009.
Most state fines for driving without insurance are currently $500, but the cities could pass local ordinances requiring insurance to keep fine collections, and would probably enact a lesser fine. Chicagotribune.com
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